DISCLAIMER: I don't own them… if I did there would have been kissing and such. This story is not intended for profit but simply to test my ability to create something I am happy with that others might enjoy.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

A Divergent Connection
By Annette


Part 1

"Where is she! Where is that self-centered, no good…"

"Jo! What's going on?"

"Look Mrs. G, you have no idea what she did today. I can't let this one go, not this time!"

"Well I certainly can't let you confront her when you're so angry. You need to calm down and tell me what happened."

"Fine. Ya know, I really thought all this crap would stop once we got to college. I'm gettin' good and tired of her tellin' people I'm some charity case who wouldn't know Prada from Gucci so they should try to overlook my ignorance. Then she tops it off with a sob story about how she's had to put up with it for years and all her attempts have been futile. That's just a bunch of crap Mrs. G! I never asked for her help because I don't need it. Why the Hell would I want to be anything like her!"

"Language Jo."

"Sorry. She just pushes my buttons all the time. Listen, I really need some uninterrupted time to talk to her. I'm much calmer now and I promise there won't be any bloodshed. Can you keep Nat and Tootie away just until dinner?"

"I don't know, Jo. You were awfully angry when you walked in here."

"Please, Mrs. G, if I don't do this now it's only gonna get worse."

"Alright, but I expect both of you to be at the dinner table in 45 minutes. Agreed?"

"You got it, thanks."

Jo made her way to their shared room knowing the time had come to let Blair know, once and for all, that she'd had enough of her childish nonsense. She'd do her best to reign in her temper, she did promise no bloodshed, but she never promised not to give her a good scare. Setting a nasty scowl on her face Jo pushed open the door, locking it behind her. Turning toward the object of her ire she was momentarily distracted by the vision before her. Blair, in the midst of changing, was standing in front of her closet in her bra and panties.

"Jo! What are you doing?" Blair squealed as she attempted to cover herself. "Stop staring at me and turn around for goodness sake!"

Pulled from her stupor by the sound of Blair's voice Jo quickly recovered. "Relax Princess, you ain't got nothin' I haven't seen before."

"I don't care! I don't want you ogling me!"

"Ogling you! Don't flatter yourself. You ain't all that."

"What do you mean by that? I have a very nice body."

Whoa, she's completely forgotten she's half naked. She's walking over here all pissy with her hands on her hips. She's really ticked, too, her nipples are hard. Whoa, whoa, whoa there nelly, stop looking at her breasts!


"Well what?" Oh my… stop staring at her cleavage for Pete's sake! You're mad at her, remember. Wait a minute, who cares if I'm mad or not, why the Hell am I staring at her cleavage!

"What's wrong with my body?"

Wait a minute, is she crying? "There's nothin' wrong with your body Blair. Why are you cryin'?"

Suddenly Blair just seemed to fold in on herself and slipped to the floor sobbing. Hesitating at first Jo realized she couldn't just do nothing. So she knelt in front of Blair and pulled her into her arms. "Hey, shhh, easy. Oh, Princess, what's wrong – what's got you so busted up?"

As Blair fought to compose herself she realized just where she was and stiffened. Pulling away from Jo she attempted to stand. "I'm fine, Jo. I just need to freshen up and get dressed for dinner."

Jo couldn't believe the transformation as Blair went from sobbing mess to composed in the blink of an eye. The only sign of her previous condition were the red-rimmed eyes. Jo felt the need to do more than just help her to her feet and so she offered… "Listen, Blair, I know we don't get along all that great but I just want ya ta know that if ya wanna talk about it..."

"Whatever do you mean? I don't have anything I need to talk about, and if I did do you really think I'd turn to you?" Looking defiantly into the now confused blue eyes she couldn't help but notice the look of hurt that flashed there just before the fire returned.

"Just forget it then, I'll pretend I didn't see you sobbing in my arms and you can pretend you didn't have a mini-meltdown" Turning away Jo threw one last barb at the blonde. "I almost thought there was a human being under all that silk and lace – pretty stupid huh?"

Blair watched as Jo walked out of the room, and as the door closed she couldn't help but wonder if – for once in her life – she should have let someone in. "Maybe it's not too late." And with that thought set in her mind Blair proceeded to freshen up and get dressed for dinner.

Meanwhile, Jo had made her way to the kitchen and was helping set the table. Edna watched her young charge as she tried to compose herself. She recognized the anger in the young woman, but it seemed to be tempered with sadness. "Is everything alright, Jo?"

"Just peachy Mrs. G, just peachy."

"Hello, everyone!" Blair announced with a bit too much cheer as she moved to fill the water glasses.

Once again Edna took a moment to observe and sensed a similar sadness under the false cheerfulness. Well, this is different. It seems that their talk may have been a good thing since they aren't at each other's throats. But they are both so sad… perhaps they need more time. Hmmm.

Walking up to Blair, Edna took in the red-rimmed, slightly puffy eyes and couldn't help but ask. "Are you alright, Blair?"

"Of course I'm alright." She responded too brightly. "I'm me after all!"

Twin groans from Natalie and Tootie, and a sigh from Jo were the only responses to her remark as everyone settled in for the meal. And an interesting meal it was. Natalie prattled on about her latest writing assignment while Tootie regaled everyone with recaps of her favorite TV shows. All the while both seemed oblivious to the fact that neither Blair nor Jo had uttered a word. Blair barely lifted her head from her plate, and Jo tried to surreptitiously sneak peaks at Blair from time to time. Edna, however, observed all of this, and it helped her come to a decision.

"Girls, why don't you all clean up these dishes while I make a quick phone call." As they rose to do her bidding Edna made her way into the living room to make her call.

Back in the kitchen the clean up was a silent affair and Natalie was the first to break the silence. "Why is it so quiet in here?" She asked as she looked at everyone. "Why aren't you two sniping at each other?"

Blair and Jo shared a look as they each tried to think of some answer to Nat's question. Jo was the first to speak. "Well, Nat… um I just…" Trying desperately to come up with something Blair jumped in for the save. "What Jo's trying to say is, we've decided to try to keep the sniping down to a minimum." And as she finished she flashed a bright smile at Jo who simply stood there shocked.

"Wow, that's so great!" Tootie beamed at the two. "Isn't that great Nat?"

"Yeah, great." I bet they don't make it through the night with that one.

Just then the kitchen door opened and Edna entered. "I have some wonderful news, girls! You remember that I was planning to visit my friend in the city tomorrow?"

Everyone nodded and Blair added. "How could I forget, I had to cancel a date with Brad after all."

The words flew out of Jo's mouth before she could stop them. "Poor, self-sacrificing Blair."

Turning frosty eyes on the brunette Blair flicked her hair back and answered. "Well, Jo, at least I had a date to cancel. What did you give up, a romantic night with your wrenches and grease?"

"I knew it." Natalie smirked in triumph.

"Now, girls…" Edna said sternly as she started to wonder if what she was about to do was prudent. "As I was saying, I'll be leaving a little later than originally planned since Natalie and Tootie don't get out of school until 2:30."

"But Mrs. Garret." A confused Tootie asked. "Why do you need to wait for us to get home?"

"Well, I just spoke to my friend and she said I could bring you and Natalie with me." Amidst the squeals of delight and acceptance Edna turned to Blair and Jo to explain. "She doesn't have room enough for everyone, I hope you two don't mind?"

"Nah, it's cool Mrs. G."

"Yes, I may even be able to salvage my evening with Brad."

"Now, Blair, dear, I know you wouldn't mind staying at home for one night. I'd hate to spend my trip worrying about you being out while I'm not close to home."

"Well, I suppose I could make that sacrifice for you Mrs. Garret."

"Thank you dear." Turning toward Natalie and Tootie Edna ushered them up to their rooms. "Now just pack enough for one day, girls."

As the two rushed off to pack Edna watched as Blair and Jo finished up the cleaning. There was definitely something different in their body language and she hoped that giving them this time alone would have a positive result. They are so different, and that's all they can see. What they don't realize is that they are very much alike in some ways. Sending up a short prayer for her two older charges Edna turned to her room to pack. Please, Lord, give them the strength to see beyond their differences.

Part 2

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